Who are you and what do you do?
My name is Daniel Norris and I am a trainee solicitor at Churchers. I began my training contract in October 2017.
Tell us about your current seat.
I am currently training with Partner Chris Matthews in the Private Wealth Management team. This team deals with all aspects of private client work, including drafting wills and powers of attorney, setting up and administering trusts, and administering estates. It is incredibly rewarding to help real people with real issues, because this is ultimately why I wanted to qualify as a solicitor in the first place.
Why did you apply for a training contract with Churchers Solicitors?
Churchers Solicitors offers a wide range of training seats, which puts me in a great position to decide which area of law I might want to qualify into. Having worked at several large firms in the past, I felt like I could make more of an impact on a personal level at a firm that delivers services from High Street offices in the area where I grew up.
When did you first become interested in training to be a solicitor?
It may sound a cliche, but I have been interested in becoming a solicitor ever sine I had an appreciation of what a ‘job’ was. I’ve always had a keen eye for detail and undertook my first piece of legal work experience at 16 at a local firm of solicitors – I was immediately captivated by their obvious importance to society.
What has been your highlight, and biggest challenge, so far?
My biggest highlight so far has been speaking to prospective lawyers and students interested in law at careers fairs in Portsmouth. I enjoy mentoring those who have a real commitment to the legal profession, because I know how challenging it can be to get to the trainee stage.
My biggest challenge has been switching departments, and knowing that this will happen at least once more during my training. Having worked hard in the commercial property department, it is demanding being transferred to another department and working for different people.
What advice would you give someone looking to apply for a training contract with Churchers Solicitors?
They need to be down to earth, enthusiastic about the local community and have a good sense of humour. Churchers Solicitors prides itself on being approachable, accessible, and friendly, which can mean being open to visiting people at home and ALWAYS placing the needs of the client first.
What are you most looking forward to about working at Churchers Solicitors?
I am most excited about having the opportunity to progress my career with Churchers Solicitors. One of the reasons I was interested in applying was the great opportunity to do this, and recently I have been inspired by my colleagues Lauren McIntosh and Faye Evans, who were promoted to partner, because it really gives me something to aim for.
What is the most important thing you’ve learned so far?
To appreciate the steps that need to be taken to offer excellent client service. I've been inspired by the attitude my current department has towards putting the client first, and I've learned that adopting this attitude really sets the Churchers Solicitors team apart from other local firms.